Health insurance in America fell to an all-time low in 2006 with 44 million people without any health insurance coverage. Accounting for 17% of the population, these people lacked even the most basic coverage leaving them with 100% responsibility for all of their medical costs from checkups to prescriptions.
In 2010, the number of uninsured Americans continued to rise with many of the southern states having uninsured rates as high as 22%.
Obamacare has changed the healthcare outlook for America drastically. Now, there are more Americans insured than ever before. It took less than 4 years for Obamacare to change the face of health insurance in the country. Since the Affordable Care Act was enacted, there have been 10 million people that were uninsured now able to afford health insurance without having to pay full price for treatment; checkups, birth control and eye care are all provided.
Out of the 10 million people able to pay for health insurance, 4 million are between the age of 19 and 25. States that have allowed the expansion of Medicaid have seen the number of uninsured people drop by almost 40%. However, states that have not allowed the expansion of Medicaid, such as Texas, still have high uninsured rates; Texas is the only state with more than 22% of people lacking coverage.
Statistically, 3.6 million people lack insurance due to states opting out of Medicaid expansion.
There has also been drastic changes aside from the number of people now insured thanks to Obamacare. These changes include:
$1· Young adults, under the age of 26, to remain on their parent’s health insurance plan.
$1· Insurers cannot charge more because of gender or pre-existing conditions.
$1· Unjustified rate hikes are not allowed.
$1· Insurers are not allowed to drop a person’s coverage when they become sick or if a mistake was made on an application.
Low and middle-income families can compare rates on the government-ran health insurance marketplace. Tax credits are offered for those that can’t afford to pay for health insurance and fall below a certain income threshold.
For many people, health insurance costs have dropped; for some, they have risen. A drawback of Obamacare is that anyone that chooses not to have insurance despite their current financial situation will have to pay a fee. Fees have risen to 2% of a household’s income, or$325 per person up to $975 per family; whichever rate is higher will need to be paid.